The third evening of the 10 day Piazzette Festa in Barga and people are already starting to wilt a bit at the edges. It’s a hard old life. For some of the audience waiting on the steps of Piazza Angelio for the live concert to start this evening, the wait just became too long … and so they took matters into their own hands and started to make their own music. A guitar was pulled out and people started to sing but what was missing was the rhythm section. That too was easily sorted out when some of the antique paioli copper pots that were sitting outside the Galleria Marzocco were pressed into service. Within minutes the piazza was filling with the sound of beaten copper being beaten just a little bit more and decidedly in time.
polenta or Corn meal is made the old-fashioned way using large copper pots known in Italian as paiolo. Its rolled – angled sides encourage frequent stirring that keeps the polenta’s consistency moist and tender.
Pietro Longhi (November 5, 1701 – May 8, 1785) was a Venetian painter of contemporary scenes of life. A paraphrase of Bernard Berenson states that “Longhi painted for the Venetians passionate about painting, their daily lives, in all dailiness, domesticity, and quotidian mundane-ness. In the scenes regarding the hairdo and the apparel of the lady, we find the subject of gossip of the inopportune barber, chattering of the maid; in the school of dance, the amiable sound of violins. It is not tragic… but upholds a deep respect of customs, of great refinement, with an omnipresent good humor distinguishes the paintings of the Longhi from those of Hogarth, at times pitiless and loaded with omens of change”.